Rice mourns loss of trustee emeritus, philanthropist Kent Anderson

Rice trustee emeritus Darryl Kent Anderson ’62, philanthropist and a namesake of the building that houses the Susanne M. Glasscock School of Continuing Studies, died Sept. 24. He was 74.

Kent Anderson

Kent Anderson

A lifelong supporter of Rice, Anderson’s influence spanned more than half a century. As an undergraduate, Anderson was a member of Hanzsen College, the debate team, the German Club, the baseball team, the Rally Club and the Thresher staff. After completing his bachelor’s degree in geology, he went to the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business, where he earned an MBA in 1964.

Anderson was elected to the Rice Board of Trustees in 1986 and served for three decades, eventually being named one of only two lifetime trustees.

“Over his lifetime, Kent served Rice with devotion,” said University Historian Melissa Kean. “He did everything he was ever asked to do for Rice, and he did it quietly, calmly and thoughtfully.”

In 1999, Rice awarded Anderson its highest honor, the Gold Medal Award. In 2010, he received Rice’s Distinguished Owl Club Award, which recognized his support for Rice’s athletic programs.

Most recently, Anderson was honored by the naming of the D. Kent and Linda C. Anderson and Robert L. and Jean T. Clarke Center. The building’s construction was made possible by a naming gift from Anderson and his wife, Linda, and Rice trustee emeritus Robert Clarke ’63 and his late wife, Jean (“Puddin”), and more than 400 other donors.

Anderson’s 50-year career was concentrated in banking and finance, including turns as head of Allied Bancshares, First Interstate Bank and Post Oak Bank. Following a merger with Post Oak, he was special consultant to the chairman of Compass Bank. In 2001, he retired from banking to devote his time and energy to the Anderson Family Partnership.

Anderson was dedicated to Houston and served as the chairman or director of numerous area organizations, including the Houston Endowment, the Coronado Club, Pulte Homes, Sam Houston Race Park, Texas Chamber of Commerce, Texas Research League, Texas Presbyterian Foundation, Greater Houston Partnership, the Houston Ballet, the Houston Symphony, the Children’s Museum of Houston and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

Anderson is survived by his wife of 46 years, their three children and eight grandchildren.

A celebration of Anderson’s life was held Oct. 2 in the sanctuary of Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church, 11612 Memorial Drive.

About Arie Passwaters

Arie Wilson Passwaters is editor of Rice New.